Thursday, March 7, 2013

"On a long and lonesome highway, east of Omaha"

Hello, everyone! I hope this blog finds you well, and inside staying warm. It's been a pretty cold winter for us out here on the road, and we are certainly looking forward to some warmer weather. The title of this blog is a line from the Bob Seger song Turn The Page, which often too well sums up our experiences on the road. Here are some highlights from our two weeks in Da Nati.

We arrived via bus from Louisville very early in the afternoon, as it was only a 2 hour drive. We had high hopes for things to do near the hotel, and for a successful run here in the Queen City. The first couple of days most of us laid pretty low due to the cold and windy weather, but opening night went extremely well in the new and gorgeous Aronoff Center for the Performing Arts. After the show, a bunch of us headed across the street to Nicholson's, a great looking bar and gastropub. We were not disappointed in the least. With great food including Scotch eggs, lobster and crab Mac n' cheese, and a delicious mixed green salad with beets and goat cheese insured it would be a popular place for all of us to gather. The Kentucky Bourbon Barrel Ale they serve didn't hurt either....

On Thursday, Billy, Rosie and I headed to a few great vintage stores, and then to one of the better independent record stores that I have ever been to, Shake It Records. That evening after the show, the entire cast made their way to the Sub Zero Lounge to have a fun filled evening of karaoke, (pictures above) as a way to say goodbye to Mel. She has been with us for most of this leg of tour as one of our company managers, and was just always such a helpful and warm member of our tour family. She will be sorely missed. But, I think we all had a pretty good time, regardless.

The weekend was pretty low key, and Monday brought our first non-traveling day off in quite a while. It was a bit warmer, so I headed down toward the river and visited the Great American Ballpark, home of the Cincinnati Reds. The park, of course, was closed, as was the team shop. But that didn't deter me from having a great day walking around and seeing the sights. After some time at home to reheat, I headed to the Rock Bottom Brewery with the cast and some of the crew to help celebrate James' son Sam's 2nd birthday. It was a much needed break, and a fun outing for all of us (video below, pictures above)

On Wednesday, I headed back to the ballpark so I could visit the Reds Hall Of Fame. Probably one of the best museums I have ever been to. So much great memorabilia, and it was extremely interactive. I was there for quite a while taking pictures, watching videos, and even throwing a few pitches from a regulation mound (pictures above). On Thursday, National Chili Day, Billy, Rosie and I headed to the American Sign Museum. Yet again, one of the best museums I have ever seen. It is a comprehensive history of American sign making over the last 100 years or so. Pretty fascinating. And, with so many large scale signs and examples, we could've been there for hours (pictures above). We even got to see craftsmen making neon signs, because they have a neon shop on sight. Pretty incredible to watch that in person. We left, hungry for chili, and though it may not have been Skyline (one of my all time favorites), Camp Washington Chili was pretty fantastic.

The rest of the weekend, most of us just kinda stayed inside and stayed warm. The wind and temperature started to get pretty brutal. But, we had one last hurrah on our final night in town. Katie's birthday was the following day, so we took her out to a bar with a great digital jukebox, and ended up singing along to soul, classic rock and 90's music all night. It was a great way to end our time in Cincy.

So, the following day we flew to Texas, and were greeted with 80 degree weather....and the rest you'll have to wait for until next week....happy March, everyone!


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